Anthem's Community Giving Program
Through our community giving program Here’s to Your Health, Anthem is helping to create what we call “community health.” We do this by directing dollars to a variety of nonprofit organizations, donating countless hours of volunteer time and creating our own special Anthem programs.
There are six programs we are particularly proud of—programs that are making a difference in the short-term and, we hope, will have a long-lasting impact on our community health.
Miles for Smiles
Tooth decay is the single most common chronic childhood disease, occurring five times more frequently than asthma. And, 25 percent of children–largely from low-income and minority populations–go without dental care. Since 1999, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield has worked to relieve this health crisis–donating more than $1.5 million to improve the oral health of children.
Anthem worked with Kids in Need of Dentistry in Colorado and the University of Nevada School of Dental Medicine to build two 36-foot, state-of-the-art, custom-designed mobile dental clinics called Miles for Smiles. The clinics feature Adec operatories, a Digora digital x-ray system and an integrated triangle sterilization center. They are fully operational to handle most dental procedures and can handle emergency situations, as well.
Over 10,000 children have received free, or low-to-no-cost, dental care through the clinics. An estimated 150,000 additional children have received Anthem toothbrush kits and education on oral health.
Community-Active Volunteer Grants
Our Community-Active Volunteer-of-the-Month award was established as a way to cite and honor Anthem associates who are making exceptional volunteer contributions and to underscore the value Anthem places on active community volunteerism. A $1,000 grant is given to each monthly awardee’s charity of choice.
Volunteerism by Anthem associates does not need to be of a formal nature. It can mean time and effort spent caring for an elderly neighbor or family member with special needs, volunteering for a local nonprofit human service organization, participating actively in a religious institution, or coaching youth sports teams.
Since 2001, through this program, Anthem has granted over $30,000 to a wide variety of agencies in Colorado and Nevada, including the Rocky Mountain Law Center, Flight for Life, Nevada Committee to Aid Abused Women, Clinica Tepayac, Centennial Philharmonic Orchestra, Black Forest Fire Rescue, Shade Tree Shelter and the Northern Nevada Literacy Council.
Kids Walking Challenge
Research tells us that over 10 percent of children and adolescents are overweight. And, over 30 percent don’t participate in regular physical activity. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield launched its Kids Walking Challenge program in 2003. The Challenge seeks to motivate students in the elementary grades to take a walk–one of the best choices for a regular and effective form of physical activity.
A group of state and community leaders, including Colorado Congressmen Bob Beauprez and Mark Udall, select elementary schools that exhibit exceptional commitment to fostering physical fitness and health in their students. Selected schools receive a $1,000 donation–after they walk a collective 100 miles! Anthem also provides walking pedometers to all students so the miles they walk can be counted and tracked.
Anthem believes that the Kids Walking Challenge is one very effective way to encourage healthy behaviors during childhood–the most formative time of development.
Hero in Health
Anthem’s Hero in Health program was developed in 2001 as a way to publicly acknowledge and reward those who exemplify the highest level of commitment to serving underinsured and uninsured individuals, as well as to heighten awareness of health care access and affordability issues.
Each year, Anthem directs this prestigious $10,000 award to a nonprofit organization that provides free and/or reduced-cost services to the uninsured and/or underinsured. In 2003, the Hero in Health award was given to the Inner City Health Center, a Denver-based facility that provides medical care to over 15,000 low-income and medically uninsured families annually.
It is Anthem’s hope that the Hero in Health award makes a statement about our support for the critically important work being done throughout Colorado on behalf of uninsured and underinsured citizens.
Mile High Montessori
In 2003, Anthem “adopted” a Denver inner-city child care center–the Westside Center which serves predominantly Hispanic children who are eight weeks to five years of age.
Mile High Montessori offers affordable, high-quality child care services so parents living in poverty can work or receive employment training. The majority of clients are single mothers who have taken steps to become self sufficient through employment training and work thereby moving away from public assistance.
In addition to making a financial contribution of $10,000 to the Westside Center, in 2004, eager Anthem associates will initiate a variety of projects to benefit staff, parents and children. Activities will include a book and clothing drive, a fundraiser for new equipment, playground renovation, and a holiday gift-giving celebration.
Anthem believes that healthy behaviors are shaped in early childhood and that our work with the Westside Center will help ensure each child’s lifelong investment in health.
Over the past four years, Anthem and its associates have contributed over $1 million to United Way agencies in Colorado and Nevada. Anthem runs a vigorous and fun-filled annual campaign and matches associate donations 50 cents for each dollar contributed.
In 2001 and 2002, Anthem received the Mile High United Way’s “Spirit of Hope” award in recognition of our strong workplace campaign. In 2003 and again in 2004, Anthem was truly honored to receive Mile High United Way’s top honor–the “Champion of Hope” award.
Anthem supports United Way because we believe in its mission–to unite and focus community’s resources to help people help themselves. We admire United Way’s administrative efficiency, and we embrace its commitment to local problem-solving and citizen involvement.
As you can see, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield takes the issue of social responsibility very seriously. We are a company invested in committed corporate citizenship.
In addition to the programs above, Anthem:
| Is a premier sponsor of the Denver Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 annual luncheon, which honors up-and-coming business and community leaders. |
| Was the largest corporate fundraising team at the 2003 AIDS Walk Colorado. |
| Participates annually in Colorado and Nevada in the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation’s Race for the Cure. |
| Provided financial support to over 60 nonprofit organizations in 2003. |
| Supports the volunteer activities of associates and senior managers who serve on the boards of directors of numerous nonprofit organizations, including The Alzheimer’s Association, Easter Seals, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, the Public Education and Business Coalition, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Mile High United Way, and the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness.|
For more information about our community giving programs please contact Sally Vogler at 303-831-5899.